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Search engines are marketing tools that some businesses just donít use
yet. Some marketers rely on traditional advertising or pretty girls on the
street pushing leaflets. How does the internet compare?
I started this article after speaking to two different marketing companies
who were proposing websites for their new clients.
Marketing company A stated that they wanted a new website just to provide
more information on each apartment in a large block they were selling. Visitors
would be directed to the website by their print, radio and television marketing.
They did not believe that search engine optimization was necessary and wanted
the whole website to be in Flash - no words in text format - just in Flash
Marketing company B said they needed visitors to place detailed orders
through a new website which had detailed choices of products and dimensions.
However, because their product was so revolutionary they did not expect anyone
to search the web for it. So they wanted no search engine optimization. They
would drive customers to the website by radio, television and print advertising,
plus they would put pretty girls on the streets handing out leaflets.
That gave me a good laugh, but also astounded me.
Radio and television commercials may have a wide reach for two minutes while
they are on, but are potential customers going to remember a new website address
when they next go to their computer? Of course they could use a search engine to
look for it, but if the website has no search engine optimization, or worse
still if itís all in graphics, the potential customers have very little hope of
Print commercials are a little better. A potential customer can later go back
to the newspaper or magazine and find the advertisement, or in the case of the
leaflet from the pretty girl on the street, it can be retrieved from the pocket
or purse or bin.
But all that assumes the potential customers will act right away and go to
the website. But what if they donít think about it until long after the
commercial has played, or after the recycling bin has been emptied?
In that case the marketing companies must repeat the commercials and
advertisements over and over and put more pretty girls on the street with
leaflets, again and again, at great effort and cost to the client.
Marketing cost can be a big hurdle for a new product. Television, radio and
printed advertisements can be a hundreds of times the cost of a website.
Marketing company A said their apartments should sell out in six months. But
what if they didnít? The last apartment in a block could take a year or more to
sell. A website is there for as long as you like. The only continuing cost is
the hosting - a few dollars per month, compared with thousands of dollars per
day on traditional advertising.
We know that marketing companies earn their money as a percentage of the
advertising billings, but surely saving their client some expense while getting
the customers must win points in the end.
And cost is only one factor. The internet reaches the Whole Wide World, while
traditional advertising reaches only a fraction of the population. The potential
customer must listen to the radio or watch TV at the right time, or look at the
right page of the magazine or newspaper, or be on the right street in the right
town at the right time and then not lose the leaflet. However the website is
available in every town 24 hours a day 365 days a year.
So spend high on traditional advertising if you want to, but if you want your
marketing to be viable in the long term you need to optimize your website to be
found by search engines.
About the Author
Ken McKay, Australian website designer for small businesses, has been
building websites for ten years. More information on web design and search
engines is available at platypus websites -
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Article Published/Sorted/Amended on Scopulus 2007-11-19 10:39:19 in Computer Articles